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Help: A Little Bit of Burgling on the Side

Murray Mac:Leod 17 Jan 00 - 10:28 PM
Bugsy 17 Jan 00 - 11:53 PM
Murray MacLeod 18 Jan 00 - 09:51 PM
GUEST 20 Jan 00 - 11:18 PM
Harvey 14 Dec 02 - 01:09 PM
Nigel Parsons 14 Dec 02 - 01:23 PM
trayton 22 Jan 03 - 03:56 PM
Sorcha 22 Jan 03 - 04:00 PM
nutty 22 Jan 03 - 06:21 PM
trayton 24 Jan 03 - 02:48 PM
Murray MacLeod 24 Jan 03 - 07:07 PM
GUEST 18 May 09 - 12:48 AM
GUEST,Bert Scofield 22 Apr 14 - 05:19 AM
GUEST,Rob 20 Oct 14 - 05:55 PM
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Subject: A Little Bit of Burgling on the Side
From: Murray Mac:Leod
Date: 17 Jan 00 - 10:28 PM

I have a videotape of a singing session from the Sidmouth Folk Festival, and on it there is a very funny song which I assume is called "A Little Bit of Burgling on the Side" It is about a policeman who augments his income by burgling houses in his spare time. My question is, does anyone know who wrote this song ? I have been singing it for years, and would like to give credit to the author.

Thanks in advance for any help.

Murray


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Subject: RE: Help: A Little Bit of Burgling on the Side
From: Bugsy
Date: 17 Jan 00 - 11:53 PM

never heard it before - but can you please post the lyrics.

Cheers

bugsy


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Subject: ADD: A Little Bit of Burgling on the Side
From: Murray MacLeod
Date: 18 Jan 00 - 09:51 PM

Ok Bugsy, here goes, plus guitar chords (you can figure out the melody easily)

A LITTLE BIT OF BURGLING ON THE SIDE
(leastways I assume that is the title )
  
G7 C G7 C
After plodding on the beat all day for eight hours on or
G7
more
C G7 C
Arresting thieves and crooks of every kind
Am Dm D G7
I need a change from acting as the long arm of the law
Dm D G7
Some hobby that will help a man unwind
C G7 C
Though some may think my pastime rather taxing
C G7 C
It's benefits just cannot be denied
Am Dm G7
I find it therapeutic and relaxing
G7 C
To do a bit of burgling on the side.
----------------------------------------------------------
CHORUS:
C F C F
It's only right and proper for a conscientious copper
C F C
And really it's quite easy once you've tried
Am Dm D G7
A most rewarding hobby, beneficial to a bobby
G7 C
Is a little bit of burgling on the side.
----------------------------------------------------------

Back home I hang my helmet on the hatstand in the hall
And change into my striped shirt and flat cap
Equipped with mask and jemmy I go vaulting over walls
In search of swag as nimbly as a cat
Now, burglary demands both strength and fitness
And as a burglar I can state with pride
Constabulary colleagues never witness
My little bit of burgling on the side.

[CHORUS]

Now, burgling boosts my wages and I'm better off today
'Cos all my casual earnings are tax-free
And though they say that in the long run crime will never pay
It pays better than the government pays me.
Some constables are keen on stamp-collecting
A most relaxing way to spend one's time
But some inspectors when they're not inspecting
Like to dabble in the art of petty crime.

[CHORUS]

Now I've been a bobby on the beat for nigh on twenty year
And retirement soon is looming up for me
I'll bow out with a pension, a handshake and a watch
Maybe even with an MBE
But if I find my pension cannot get me
The luxuries my hobby could provide
I'll disinter my trusty rusty jemmy
And go back to doing my burgling on the side.

[CHORUS] (repeat last line of chorus).


I have to to confess that the last verse is my own addition. On the videotape, there is a different last verse which I can't remember right now, but it was vaguely unsatisfactory, didn't finish the song off properly.

Notes for Non-UK 's. A "jemmy " is a crowbar. A (horizontally) striped shirt and flat cap is what every burglar wears, if we are to believe English cartoons and comic strips. "Swag" is a colloquialism for stolen goods.

Anyone know who the author is?
Words and music by Peter Christy 1978, from the group Instant Sunshine for more information see their web site at http://www.instantsunshine.co.uk/


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Subject: RE: Help: A Little Bit of Burgling on the Side
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Jan 00 - 11:18 PM

Refresh.


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Subject: Lyr Req: You've got to do a bit of burgl
From: Harvey
Date: 14 Dec 02 - 01:09 PM

Has anyone ever heard a comic song called You've got to do a bit of burgling on the side? I heard it years ago at a session in a pub. I've never heard it since, but I've never forgotten how much it made me laugh.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: You've got to do a bit of burgl
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 14 Dec 02 - 01:23 PM

Steve Haswell performs it as mentioned here; anyone know him ?


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Subject: RE: Help: A Little Bit of Burgling on the Side
From: trayton
Date: 22 Jan 03 - 03:56 PM

Words and music by Peter Christy 1978, from the group Instant Sunshine for more information see their web site at http://www.instantsunshine.co.uk/


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Subject: Lyr ADD: and attribution A Little Bit of Burgling
From: Sorcha
Date: 22 Jan 03 - 04:00 PM

Thank you, trayton! Also include an attribution, please, harvesters.


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Subject: RE: Help: A Little Bit of Burgling on the Side
From: nutty
Date: 22 Jan 03 - 06:21 PM

The words seem to fit the tune of the Gilbert and Sullivan song "A Policeman's Lot Is Not A Happy One"


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Subject: Lyr Add: A LITTLE BIT OF BURGLING ON THE SIDE
From: trayton
Date: 24 Jan 03 - 02:48 PM

just for the record this is the set of words on the Instant Sunshine LP.

A LITTLE BIT OF BURGLING ON THE SIDE
(Peter Christie 1978)

After plodding round me beat all day for 8 hours on or more
Arresting thieves or crooks of every kind
I need a change from acting as the long arm of the law
Some pastime that will help a man unwind
Although me hobby can be rather taxing
The benefits just cannot be denied
I find it therapeutic and relaxing
To do a bit of burgling on the side

It's only right and proper a conscientious copper
Should sometimes put his uniform aside
A most rewarding hobby beneficial to a bobby
Is to do a bit of burgling on the side

Back home I hang me helmet on the hanger in the hall
And change into a striped shirt and flat hat
With burgling bag and jemmy I slip out across the wall
In search of swag as cautious as a cat
Burglary demands both health and fitness
And as a burglar I can say with pride
Constabulary colleagues never witness
Me little bit of burgling on the side

Burgling boosts me wages and I'm better off today
For all me casual earnings are tax free
And though it may be true that on the whole crime doesn't pay
It pays more than the government pays me
It takes a thief to catch a thief who's thinking
And so I feel me hobby's justified
On me beat all the burglars are leaving
Since I began me burgling on the side

Peter Christie 1978
From the Instant Sunshine LP: " The Instant Sunshine LP" EMI NTS215


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Subject: RE: Help: A Little Bit of Burgling on the Side
From: Murray MacLeod
Date: 24 Jan 03 - 07:07 PM

Well, thank you, Trayton !

I never thought I would see this thread rise again.

Presumably the absence of the "Some constables are keen on stamp-collecting" verse in the album lyrics means that somebody else had been tampering with the original structure prior to my unauthorised extension.

Well, that's the folk process I suppose.

Murray


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: You've got to do a bit of burgl
From: GUEST
Date: 18 May 09 - 12:48 AM

The British group 'Instant Sunshine' have recorded it. I perform it here in folk clubs etc.

Hope it helps

Wayne
New Zealand


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Subject: RE: Help: A Little Bit of Burgling on the Side
From: GUEST,Bert Scofield
Date: 22 Apr 14 - 05:19 AM

I am fairly sure that this song which I sang only last night, snd have been singing for years was sung by that wonderful group 'Instant Sunshine'


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Subject: RE: Help: A Little Bit of Burgling on the Side
From: GUEST,Rob
Date: 20 Oct 14 - 05:55 PM

Thanks everyone, I've been after this one for years.


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